These were the days when boats were powered by strong arms, sheer determination and bravery! Her gallant lifeboat crews were highly regarded by those they rescued or stood by in their time of need. The exposed Southsea shore made it difficult to launch the boats in rough seas, and headwinds hampered progress of even the most hardened oarsmen.
|1918||Southsea lifeboat station was closed after thirty-two years of service because it was now considered that the Solent would be adequately served by the existing Hayling Island lifeboat and the proposed motor propelled lifeboat to be introduced at Bembridge in 1922. For the following 47 years Portsmouth lacked its own lifeboat.|
|1950’s and 1960’s||During the 1950’s and 1960’s there was a significant increase in the popularity of all forms of leisure pursuits on the waters of the South Coast and a corresponding increase in calls for assistance by the amateur sailor. At this period very few RNLI lifeboats exceeded 9 knots and they required a crew of 7 to 8 people to man them and a team of launchers.|
|1963||The RNLI introduced its first inflatable rescue-boats, the ‘D’ Class, which required a crew of two and a light-weight launching trolley. They were propelled by a single 40hp engine that gave them a speed of 20 knots. The success of this revolutionary and altogether more effective inshore lifeboat, and its derivatives, led to the establishment of many new inshore lifeboat stations.|
|1965||An inshore lifeboat station was established at Eastney Point, at the entrance to Langstone Harbour. The new station was supplied with its first D Class, ‘No. 48‘, and in May that year Dr McLachlan, who had campaigned for the reintroduction of a lifeboat station at Portsmouth, was appointed its Honorary Secretary.|
|1995||The name of the station was changed to ‘Portsmouth Lifeboat Station‘ on 1 September, 1995.|
|The fine tradition of our past lifeboatmen continues to be upheld by our present lifeboat crews.|